Ensuring Our Workforce Foundation is Firm

Clinical Researcher—March 2021 (Volume 35, Issue 2)


Jim Kremidas


I’m excited that this month’s issue of Clinical Researcher focuses so much on the clinical trial workforce. The work you do is the foundation of our success as an industry. Never has this fact been more apparent than in the past year, as thousands of clinical trial workers at numerous enterprises have worked together and separately to develop pandemic-fighting vaccines in record time.

At ACRP, we believe firmly that the best ways to advance the quality and efficacy of clinical trials are to further professionalize the workforce with training, to establish meaningful and transferable competencies and standards, and to develop tools to certify and validate work performance.

As an industry, I’m happy to report we are making great strides in this direction. For example, the Partners in Workforce Advancement (PWA) initiative continues to gain exciting momentum. The PWA is a multi-stakeholder collaborative initiative to grow and expand the diversity of the clinical research workforce, and to set and support standards for workforce competence.

The PWA’s ranks are growing; earlier this year, we announced Javara had joined us. Late last year, we welcomed Altura and Wake Forest University. Currently, we have nearly 30 members representing a wide spectrum of clinical trial activities. Watch this space for more announcements!

ACRP also launched an important Diversity Advisory Council (DAC) in January. With the understanding that it is well past time to diversify the patient population, ACRP joins other leading organizations in recognizing a key to attaining that lofty goal is to diversify the clinical trial workforce.

The DAC will recommend strategies to recruit and retain clinical research professionals and students from historically underrepresented groups with the goal to enhance the quality of the existing workforce, as well as improve the overall climate of inclusivity, communication, and cultural understanding across the field. Again, watch this space for progress reports in the months to come.

As always, thank you so much for what you are doing to promote health and prolong life. I can’t think of a higher calling, and it’s our honor at ACRP to support your efforts in any way possible.

If you have thoughts or questions about ACRP’s activities, please reach out to me at jkremidas@acrpnet.org.

Jim Kremidas is Executive Director of ACRP.